British, Modern Restaurants in Leeds
1. Sous le Nez en Ville British, Modern restaurant in Leeds Quebec Hs, Quebec St - LS1
For its many regulars, a meal at this “always-consistent French bistro” with a “great wine list of interesting bottles, including aged classics” is “the highlight of any trip to Leeds”. The large basement venue has hosted business lunches and evening celebrations for more than 30 years.
2. The Man Behind The Curtain British, Modern restaurant in Leeds Lower Ground Floor Flannels - LS1
“Pure gastronomic theatre and drama” has won national fame for Michael O’Hare and – after some ups and downs in feedback over recent years – his moody and “romantic” basement in the city centre reestablished itself this year as the most commented-on venue in Leeds in our annual diners’ poll. From a 10-14-course tasting menu, “the food pushes the limits of taste like at the Fat Duck and some dishes go a little far (oyster in a dessert?)”. Not everyone’s super-impressed, with the odd reporter feeling that “while the food’s good, it’s clear that everyone involved fancies themselves too much”. Significant disappointments are notable by their absence, though, with most diners feeling the place is on dazzling form.
3. The Swine That Dines British, Modern restaurant in Leeds 58 North Street - LS2
“Perfectly executed and well-priced” dishes, including some “great puddings”, win the seal of approval for this sharing-plates venue. “Mabgate is starting to become a very cool neighbourhood – due in no small part to the Swine”. Top Tip – “those beef-fat buns!”
4. The Owl British, Modern restaurant in Leeds Lockside. Mustard Approach, Mustard Wharf - LS1
“Recently moved from the market, but still with a down-to-earth feel” – this Leeds gastropub moved in early 2022 from Kirkgate market to Lockside, in the Mustard Wharf development, complete with a covered canalside terrace. It is run by a MasterChef semi-finalist (Liz Cottam) and a former head chef of Ilkley’s Box Tree (Mark Owens), who also run Home. “The food is what every gastropub should be: delicious and always seasonal with their catch of the day”.
5. Home British, Modern restaurant in Leeds 3 Brewery Place - LS10
“The new venue” and “absolutely brilliant menu” have “really taken things up a level” at Elizabeth Cottam’s five-year-old venture, now in the city centre at Brewery Wharf on the River Aire. “The interior is very sexy and intimate, while the food has just gone up a notch”, with “an astonishing set of dishes”.
6. Brook’s British, Modern restaurant in Brighouse 6 Bradford Rd - HD6
“Refreshing to have a place of this quality in the vicinity!” say local fans of this modern operation opposite the civic hall, which has been in new ownership since 2019 and where “really good food is served by a young and enthusiastic team” from breakfast onwards (for which it receives nominations). In late 2021, The Observer’s Jay Rayner pronounced himself a fan: “powerless in the face of good bread… flavours are reliably big and self-assured… with nods towards the Middle East”, while “the value is obvious” in a restaurant that “hums with a comfortable contentment”.
7. Clocktower Restaurant, Rudding Park Hotel British, Modern restaurant in Harrogate Rudding Pk, Follifoot - HG3
Open from an early breakfast to dinner, the modern brasserie at this Georgian stately home near Harrogate wins solid ratings across the board. Afternoon tea can be taken in the Conservatory, while Horto restaurant next door provides the destination’s fine-dining option.
8. Shibden Mill Inn British, Modern restaurant in Halifax Shibden Mill Fold - HX3
“Beautiful old Yorkshire inn” – originally an eighteenth-century corn and spinning mill – that hosts “some seriously excellent cooking” from chef Will Webster. It’s a “fabulous and cosy spot” – in a place made famous by TV’s ‘Gentleman Jack’ – “and best of all there’s no mobile phone reception, so you can escape the world for a couple of hours of peace!”. Top Menu Tip – “breaded lamb spam and lamb-fat peas”.
9. Bettys Afternoon tea restaurant in Harrogate 1 Parliament Street - HG1
“Betty’s is a real institution in Harrogate” of over a century’s standing, and as the home of “traditional afternoon tea at its best” these “quintessential” tea rooms are peerless (they are “masters of the art of making a visit memorable”). “Amazing cakes and pastries are made on the premises and served alongside a wonderful selection of teas”, in a “stunning” setting enlivened by a pianist tinkling away on the ivories in the background. “Thoughtful, delicious and with no unnecessary frills: this is Yorkshire through and through”. “You cannot book so turn up early”.
10. Three Acres British, Modern restaurant in Shelley Roydhouse - HD8
“A popular local staple for many years”, this posh and hugely successful pub has been run by the Truelove family since 1968 and – much extended over the years – is known for its “consistently good food and service, with a great atmosphere”. Supporters reckon it is currently “back on form and, though expensive, a great meal is guaranteed (potted shrimps and shellfish superb!)”. A contrary view is that “the dining room decor is in a time warp, with no hint of frivolity to brighten the dullness”, while the “surprisingly long menu could do with being edited”, and the dishes arrive in “generous portions, but lack finesse”.
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